Louisiana’s Way Home

By Kate Dicamillo
Juvenile Fiction, 2018

Reviewed by Pam Tallmadge, Assistant Children’s librarian

Louisiana Elefante is back. We first met her in Kate DiCamillo’s “Raymie Nightingale.” Now we are invited on a journey to get to know Louisiana just as she is discovering new information about herself. The adventure begins when Granny whisks Louisiana away in the middle of the night, driving out of Florida to Georgia. Louisiana wants to return home to her friends, Raymie Clarke and Beverly Tapinski and to Archie, the king of cats, and Buddy, the one-eyed dog of her heart. Granny informs her they won’t be returning home. This is just one of the surprises Granny has for Louisiana. Louisiana is as determined as Granny and tries to contact her friends by phone (no listings in directory assistance). When she realizes no one is coming to bring her home, she makes other plans until everything changes, and Louisiana is set adrift. What will she do now, and who really is Louisiana Elefante?

Someone Knows My Name

By Lawrence Hill
Adult Fiction, 2007

Reviewed by Katarzyna Janiga, Adult Services

Lawrence Hill’s heartbreaking tale traces the life of Aminata Diallo, who was abducted from her village at age 11 and brought to the United States to work as a slave on a South Carolina plantation prior to the American Revolution. This book details hers, and many others suffering with great attention to detail but without embellishment. Hill’s book is honest, written in a beautiful and clear prose, yet without embellishment. It is precisely his clear, understated prose that makes the story all the more haunting and difficult to put down, even though you feel as if you can no longer be a witness to Aminata’s suffering.